Michael McDowell on Martinsville 16 Starts Best Finish: 18th
“Martinsville is where I made my Cup Series debut, so it's always been a special place for me. Because it's such a tight, flat track, it's so important to try and have a clean race. The track can really take a toll on the car, especially with all the bumping and banging that we've seen in the past.”
Matt Tifft on Martinsville (NGOTS) 3 Starts | 2 Top-10 Best Finish: 8th
"I'm definitely looking forward to heading back to Martinsville. It's been a while since I've raced there, but I think we're going to see some aggressive racing this weekend. It's easy to get caught up in your own head because you're running so close together and it's a little like bumper cars sometimes. So it'll be important to stay focused and be smart throughout the race. I'm glad to have our partners at Surface Sunscreen and Tunity TV back on the car and look forward to getting another good result for them."
David Ragan on Martinsville 25 Starts | 3 Top-10 | 1 Top-5 Best Finish: 5th
"Martinsville is one of my favorite races on the circuit. There's a lot of history at that place and it's the kind of racing that NASCAR was built on. It can be such a tough track for drivers mentally and physically, running in traffic for pretty much all 500 laps. But that's what makes it exciting for fans to watch and I'm looking forward to putting on a good show for them.”
Michael McDowell on Fontana 9 Starts Best Finish: 26th
“I'm looking forward to going to Auto Club Speedway this weekend. It will still be a learning experience, even though we've seen this package at Vegas and Atlanta. I think we'll see more cars staying wide open for longer periods of time. Looking forward to making strides with our No. 34 Love's Ford Mustang and setting ourselves up for where we need to be moving forward this season.”
Matt Tifft on Fontana (Xfinity Series) 2 Starts | 1 Top-10 Best Finish: 4th
"We've got some good momentum heading to Fontana this weekend. Coming off a Top-20 finish at Phoenix, I'm excited to see what this package will bring. Our partners at Surface Sunscreen are based in Southern California, so I'm really excited to have them on the car again and hopefully we can strive for another great finish."
David Ragan on Fontana 16 Starts | 1 Top-10 Best Finish: 7th
"It will be interesting to see how the race plays out with the aero ducts and downforce in this package. Auto Club is a unique track and I really enjoy racing there. We’ve had some good speed so far this year, so I think we will continue to be competitive this weekend.”
Michael McDowell on Phoenix 16 Starts Best Finish: 16th
“I’m excited to go to Phoenix with this package. It will be the first race for a short-track package, so it will be interesting to see what happens. I haven’t been able to test there, so I’m not really sure what to expect, but it's Phoenix, it’s my hometown race and I always look forward to that.”
Matt Tifft on Phoenix (Xfinity Series) 4 Starts | 1 Top-5 | 2 Top-10 Best Finish: 3rd
"Phoenix was a great track for me last year and we came up just short of getting a win there in the Xfinity Series. I feel like this is a great weekend to get some momentum going in the right direction for our team, especially because last week was rough, but we still saw potential during parts of the race. I'm looking forward to hitting the track in our No. 36 Tunity/Surface Sunscreen Mustang."
David Ragan on Phoenix 24 Starts | 1 Top-10 Best Finish: 10th
"I’m really looking forward to going to Phoenix. Phoenix kind of races like a short-track and I think that the new downforce package is going to make for an exciting race. So again, this will be another racetrack that’s unique to start the schedule off with and I can’t wait to see all of our friends from Select Blinds as well.”
Michael McDowell on Las Vegas 10 Starts Best Finish: 18th “I think that Vegas is going to be really different from Atlanta. There are obviously things that we learned in Atlanta that will apply, but the speeds and the smoothness of the track and just the amount of grip at Vegas, I think that teams are going to approach things quite a bit differently. It’s going to be a learning experience for all of us, but I’m super excited about the speed that we had at Atlanta and I think that it will really pay off in Vegas. Hopefully we can get this Love’s Ford Mustang qualified up front, get it driving even better during the race and just keep learning. These first 5 races is all about gathering as much information as we can and trying to figure out the direction that we need to go beyond the west coast swing.”
Matt Tifft on Las Vegas (Xfinity Series) 3 Starts Best Finish: 11th
"Looking back to the Las Vegas test, I think there’s going to be a fine balance between cars who can get over those bumps in Turns 1 and 2, and those who can handle themselves in the pack. The biggest thing I saw was that if you pull to pass someone on the bottom, you’ve got to clear them right away because if you don’t, you’re going to get freight trained. It will be interesting to see how that all plays out. I’m hopeful that this package will give the No. 36 Tunity/Surface Sunscreen Ford Mustang the opportunity to get some good runs going and continue to build the momentum that we’ve seen as a new team this season."
David Ragan on Las Vegas 13 Starts | 1 Top-10 Best Finish: 7th
“I think Las Vegas is going to be a very interesting race with the aero ducts on our cars this weekend. It will be a little different from Atlanta, but I think at Vegas you’re going to see a lot more pack-style racing. A 400-mile race is usually a little more intense because everybody is a little more antsy from the drop of the green flag. Las Vegas is a great venue for our sport and I couldn’t be more proud to have CITGARD on our Ford Mustang. It should be a really fun weekend.”
Michael McDowell on Atlanta “We have a lot of momentum heading to Atlanta after our top 5 finish last weekend at Daytona. I’m excited to see how the racing will be with the new downforce package. If all goes well, I think that we will see a lot more pack racing, and that is what allows us to look at Atlanta and think we could possibly win there. In years past, you run top-20 and are excited about that. The top teams are going to be the top teams and the top drivers will always be the top drivers. But if you get a restart with five to go and can run wide open, it will be like Daytona. It will be a shootout. I like that style of racing. It has always suited me really well and if we can put ourselves in that position enough times, hopefully we can capitalize on that. I’m really looking forward to getting back on track and hopefully having a great race for our partner Fr8auctions this weekend.”
Matt Tifft on Atlanta "I think it's going to be interesting. I feel like Atlanta is going to be a little more like truck racing and I think there's going to be a lot more momentum in being able to use the top there. The interesting part is going to be pit road, when you have a lot more cars on the lead lap than in years past. The good thing is, we ran a similar package in the Xfinity Series, so I have a little experience to go off of. I'm really excited to have our partners Tunity and Surface Sunscreen on board this weekend and to put on a great show for them."
David Ragan on Atlanta “Atlanta is a unique racetrack because it is so fast, but it does have a worn-out surface where tires go away quick, so I think that it’s going to be about having a combination of a fast car that gets though the air well with this new downforce package. I think that speed in general when you have a lot of on throttle time is going to be important, but handling is going to be very important when they drop the green flag. You’re not going to be able to hold it wide open for lap after lap after lap, you’re going to have to have a car that gets into the race track, that turns with the front tires, that has good rear side-bite on exit, and so, it’s going to be a combination of, ‘how much do I put into handling, to how much do I just concentrate on pure speed.’ So, I think that it’s going to be a great race. We have a new partner, FireAde on the car, so I’m excited to have them there to experience what should be an awesome weekend.”